A concert to chase the devil out of the basement

After being introduced to this Rhode Island rock band via the song ‘These Old Shoes’ a year and a half ago, I instantly loved their bleeding of various genres that makes them stand out of the crowd. Playing at Lille Vega, the band, led by singer John McCauley’s rusty voice, delivered an epic performance for the hardcore fans that had shown up.

They slowly captured the audience by  starting out with some of their more slow upbeat tunes, as if to touch ground before blowing the roof off with ‘Let’s All Go to the Bar’ which made the audience go crazy, jumping up and down singing with all of their might. 

The band is known for playing quite a few cover numbers at their shows, and delivered a stirring memorial to Pete Seeger, the American folk singer who passed away last week, by playing ‘Bring Them Home’. 

After that they just went for the peak with Ian O'Neil leading the way singing ‘She’s not Spanish’. 

They ended the show with the song that started it all for me: ‘These Old Shoes’, leaving the audience and especially me hungry for more and not ready to end the night. Of course the concert was not over and ‘Smith Hill’ was just the first number of the roughly 40 minutes of extra songs they spoiled the audience with. 

McCauley was having a blast by improvising an instrumental number with drummer Dennis Ryan, bassist Chris Ryan and keyboard player Rob Crowell and though O’Neil tapped his wristwatch as if to say ‘We gotta go man’, he had no other choice but to join in. It was Ryan who provided their last song ‘Clownin Around’, which somewhat unexpectedly evolved into a performance of  ‘La bamba’, ending this wonderful night with the audience singing, cheering and jumping to this oldie but goodie.

As I left, my old shoes were filled with energy.